Workers’ struggles: the Americas – world socialist web site


Latin America

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Toluca, Mexico, sanitation workers demand back wages

Twenty-four hundred striking state sanitation workers occupied public buildings in the city of Toluca, the capital of the state of Mexico, demanding wages owed to them, as well as fringe benefits.

The occupations are the last measures taken by the strikers. So far, their requests have been ignored. The strikers fear that with a recent change in city administration their demands will be ignored.

Across Mexico, thousands of government and education workers are currently paid, often for several months.

Demonstration of the Buenos Aires dockworkers

Longshoremen gathered and blocked truck traffic at Terminal 5 of the Port of Buenos Aires on December 30 to protest the government’s plan to close the terminal and turn the 800 port workers into part-time workers at the remaining terminals. .

After the protest, workers delivered a petition to Casa Rosada, seat of the Argentine federal government, in downtown Buenos Aires. The agreement to close Terminal 5, remove the full-time status of its dockers and lay off hundreds of others was signed months ago by the unions and the Port Authority, behind the backs of the workers. tank tops. Since then, dockers have staged protests and work stoppages.

Belo Horizonte metro workers vote to continue strike

On December 28, strikers in the Belo Horizonte municipal public transport system voted to continue their strike until January 17. The stake is the government’s plan to privatize the public transport system.

The strike began on December 23. Transit workers demand that the metro system be improved, that it remain under municipal control, that their jobs be protected and that they receive a living wage.

Miners on strike reject contract offer

During the fourth week of strike action against the Florida Mining Company, a subsidiary of Yamana Gold, a transnational corporation based in Canada, 45 miles south of Santiago, the capital of Chile, workers overwhelmingly rejected a draft contract on December 28 by 625 voiceless out of the 696 miners who work in the mine, which extracts and processes gold, zinc and silver.

The miners are demanding a six percent wage increase, as well as other bonuses and benefits.

United States

Colorado grocers vote for leave to strike

Some 17,000 grocers at 87 King Soopers stores in Colorado voted to go on strike on Jan. 2-3. United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 7 said between 97 and 100 percent of workers voting were in favor of a strike.

King Soopers offers workers 50-cent wage increases each year from a four-year contract. But he also wants to set up a two-tier pay system and hire tailor-made workers. The company is also demanding that workers pay higher health care premiums and is seeking to reduce employee benefits. Management also wants to increase the number of hours that part-time workers must complete to receive benefits.

The contract expires on January 8 and a strike could begin the next day. King Soopers contracted with a company to supply scabs and the union filed a complaint about it.

The Fortune 500 Krogers company owns King Soopers and another Colorado chain, City Market. But the contract covering workers at some 60 City Market stores does not expire until January 29. The union also represents workers at Safeway and Albertsons.

St. Paul School District and teachers’ union begin closed-door discussions

The St. Paul, Minnesota, school district and its teachers’ union will enter into closed-door, mediated talks as the district, the union says, moves to eliminate caps on class size and class protections. Mental Health. District spokesperson Kevin Burns said the St. Paul’s Federation of Educators (SPFE) contract called “to go beyond the district’s authorized spending levels.”

The district insists that salary increases should be limited to just 1.5 percent each year of a two-year contract. The union is not asking for much more, calling for annual increases of 2.5%, well below the current rate of inflation.

In March 2020, the SPFE took advantage of the onset of the pandemic to end a three-day strike by 3,500 teachers and school support staff and pass a contract that provided for annual salary increases of 1.5% and 2% .

Canada

Food processors in London, Ontario go on strike

Production workers at the Dr. Oetker frozen pizza manufacturing plant, members of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), are expected to vote on a contract offer on January 8. The company refusing to respond to the workers’ main demand to end the shift rotation, the workers are expected to reject the proposed contract.

Such is the opposition to the archaic team system – where workers work a week as a day shift and then spend the following week on the afternoon shift and vice versa – that UFCW officials do not did not recommend acceptance of the agreement. Workers demand that they work continuously on one shift or the other depending on the selection of seniority, as constant changes are detrimental to their health and well-being. The 230 workers would be in a strike position on January 14 if the contract was rejected.


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